An Indian man was arrested at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok on Tuesday for trying to smuggle 17 prohibited animals from Thailand to India.
The Director of Thailand’s Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, Praset Sornsathapornkun, reported to the media that the 21 year old Indian man, Abilash Annadury, was arrested by the officers of the Suvarnabhumi Airport Wildlife Checkpoint.
Prasert reported that airport security was alerted to moving objects inside the man’s luggage as it passed through an x-ray scanner. Security opened his luggage and found 17 animals, six of which were prohibited species, including a desert fox, a raccoon, eight marmosets, two green tree skinks, three Bengal monitors, and two albino pythons.
The animals were packed in plastic baskets and hidden under packs of food and snacks. Officials reported that the animals were worth over 98,000 baht.
The offender, Annadury, was booked on a Thai Airways flight from Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok to Chennai International Airport in India.
Prasert reported that the Indian man violated the Wildlife Preservation and Protection Act, Section 23 by exporting wildlife animals without permission, violated the Animal Epidemics Act, Section 31 by bringing animals out of the kingdom without permission, and the Customs Act, Section 242 and 244 by bringing prohibited or controlled materials out of the country.
Under Thai Law, Section 23, the man faces a penalty of up to 10 years in jail, and a fine of up to 1 million baht, or both. The penalty depends on the purpose of his smuggling.
Under Section 31, he could face a penalty of up to two years in jail, a fine of up to 200,000 baht, or both.
Under Section 242, he could face a penalty of up to 10 years in jail, a fine of up to 500,000 baht, or both.
The man is still in police custody helping officers with their inquiries.
All of the animals were seized and are under the care of the Wildlife Conservative Office of Thailand.